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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 1 Hansard (17 February) . . Page.. 235 ..

MR BERRY (continuing):

Then, of course, one of the other great advances in the Carnell Liberal agenda was to try to sell the Civic Health Centre. What a great effort! So, I would not crow too much about your period in government. I accept responsibility for anything that I have done in the past; you should accept responsibility for anything that you have done in the past.

But that is in the past. What we now have is a motion before this place in relation to Mr Moore's performance. If you were to treat Mr Moore in the same way as you tried to treat Labor Health Ministers, he would not be there anymore. I can remember you shrieking across the room at Labor Health Ministers - not only me, but others as well - and demanding a standard of performance - - -

Mr Humphries: Everyone shrieks, according to Mr Berry.

MR BERRY: Mr Humphries ought not to enter the debate. He was the one that first sacked a chief executive of a hospital system. He was the one that had the first taste of blood, and it has stayed with them ever since. So do not enter the debate, Mr Humphries, and do not accuse anybody else of increasing waiting lists either, because you were pretty good at it yourself. I think you may have had to hand over the belt for budget blow-outs to Mrs Carnell. Whilst your performance was exemplary when it comes to budget blow-outs - you had $17m - I have got a feeling that, on average over the three years, Mrs Carnell might have beaten you. So, she has probably got the belt. Mr Moore is vying for it, though, and that is what we are on about.

In the last Estimates Committee process, this issue was raised. The committee recommended that the Minister, as a matter of urgency, advise the Assembly how the Canberra Hospital plans to develop the process necessary to ensure that a satisfactory financial outcome is received in the 1998-99 financial year and beyond and the steps that will be taken to make up the lost ground from last year's budget blow-out. (Extension of time granted) There was a quite long response from the Government, where Mr Moore - and assuming that this was an all-of-government decision - was going to deal with the problem. I think that the Assembly is entitled to feel offended as a result of that. He set out a program to deal with the issues which had been raised as a result of the examination by the Estimates Committee, but it was not true. Here we have a situation where, not only did he not implement with any effect what he said he would, but the end result has been significantly worse.

Mr Moore: Is this what I said or is this what Mr Johnston said?

MR BERRY: This is the Government's response. You are part of that, remember. Maybe you are still an Independent when the news is bad. This is the Government's response to the Select Committee on Estimates 1998-99. It was in November. So, the Government's response to a $3m or $4m situation was: "This is how we will deal with it". A few months later we end up in a situation where it is out of control and the measures that he suggested to the Assembly - not to me and not to my committee but to the Assembly - are completely ineffective.

That, to me, is a fairly clear indication that, by the Chief Minister's own standards, this Minister is in trouble. This is by Mrs Carnell's standards, not mine. You people get up and criticise Labor, but you are not bad at it yourselves, and you set the bar fairly high.

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